On Wednesday, EmpoweredU, the mobile-first learning management system, announced that it will launch its pilot program at the Viterbi School of Engineering, the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and the Rossier School of Education.
The launch will also involve eight other universities across the nation, including Clemson University, Davis College of Business at Jacksonville University, Texas Southern University, University of San Francisco, University of California at Irvine, University of California at San Diego, Southern Arkansas University and Cambria-Rowe Business College.
The program provides the tools and features for an in-class mobile learning experience that will allow students to utilize online lectures, assignments, test administration, peer-to-peer interaction, discussion forums and more.
“EmpoweredU’s mission is to help universities provide learning anywhere, anytime, with any device. Our mobile learning platform offers a full solution to universities looking to embrace teaching and learning on the go,” EmpoweredU CEO Steve Poizner said in an interview with the Herald Online. Poizner is also on the board of councilors at the Rossier School.
Binh Tran, executive director of DEN@Viterbi expressed the mission of EmpoweredU in an email to the Daily Trojan.
“We expect EmpoweredU to enhance the mobile experience for our faculty and students,” he said. “Many of our current tools and content are accessible now via mobile devices but we anticipate this system will allow students to be more organized in their coursework while balancing the demands of their career and personal lives.”
Tran also said that this new program will serve as an important gain to online students.
“The majority of our online students are working professionals and they can benefit from the mobility and engagement of this service, especially when they are enrolled in the same rigorous courses and requirements as their on-campus classmates,” he said.
The pilot program for EmpoweredU at USC allows Rossier to test the new technology with its professional development and continuing education programs.
“Steve Poizner on the Board of Councilors approached the dean’s office about the new program for mobile devices, and brought some demos that the faculty and administration were really impressed with,” said Cathryn Dhanatya, assistant dean for research and interim executive director for professional development.
Dhanatya said faculty and administrators were particularly impressed with the program’s ability to seamlessly move courses across mobile platforms and the creators’ willingness to design the program around Rossier’s needs.
“The main function will be that it allows us to experiment with the platform and see how robust it is at delivering content through a mobile platform,” she said.
Rossier’s partnership with EmpoweredU will allow the school to improve learning in urban environments.
“We’re interested in leveraging our strategic partnership to further and advance our mission,” Dhanatya said. “We want to provide online content that is high-quality and has an impact, and this partnership will allow us to do that.”